Till not long ago, bakeries were something that stacked array of sweetmeats - the crusty and syrupy jalebi’s, high-on-sugar ladoos and cup cakes - and a variety of chips that smelled and tasted coconut oil.
Then, came cutlets, rolls and sandwiches that barely tasted like the originals. And, luxury ended with pastries - the black forest, vanilla and chocolate.
However, the bake houses are no more the same in Kochi. With new-gen crowd seeking tastier options, the concept of bake houses have changed for better. There are many hi-end bakers here that offer homemade breads and cakes which they claim are “different and tastier than what you get in local bakeries”. Though you may need to shell out extra bucks here, the taste and variety are worth that, according to many.
Aswini Narayan, a women entrepreneur who recently set up the ‘The Loafers Boulangerie’, says her shop offers special cakes and homemade breads. “There are no run-of-the mill items, like black forest cakes and pastries, here. The specialities include cakes made of fruits and vegetable, cheese and yogurt. Cheese cakes are quite popular in the West and are slowly catching up in Kochi. I make sure that the ingredients used are healthier. For instance, I don’t use gelatin in food. Icing cakes are also not available here,” says Aswini. The ‘Loafers Boulangerie’ also offers breads made of whole wheat.
Aswini adds that she was surprised at the response her endeavour gathered. “Kochiites are very encouraging. I think it is the variety of the items that attracted people.
Pandal Cake Shop, an exclusive outlet for cakes, too is doing a brisk business in Kochi. The shop which sells cakes, cookies and pasteries have a very loyal customer base in Kochi. “Our speciality is unique cakes. Our menu include vanilla and blueberry cheese cakes, chocolate praline, mocha chocolate and an array of fresh cream cakes,” said Janson, manager of Pandal Cake Shops.
He adds that what attracts the customers to the shop is the imported
high-quality ingredients. “We prepare our items with utmost care in hygienic conditions. The temperature is maintained between 0-8 degree celsius,” says Janson.
Like ‘Loafers Boulangerie’, Pandal too doesn’t offer items that are ‘too common’. “You don’t get items available at local bakeries here,” says Janson.
French Toast, another bread shop on the Kaloor-Kadavantra Road, offers a variety of breads and french toasts, like the name suggest. “We have special brownies, cookies, French omelettes and a variety of breads, including garlic bread and olive breads. The baked breads and pastries do not stay in the shop for a day longer as the French bread needs to be consumed as soon as they are baked,” said Ayaz Salim, owner of French Toast.
The shop also offers pastries made of tasty Belgium Chocolates. “As many as 90 per cent of our customer are repeat ones. We haven’t given much advertisements. It is the good food that lures people to us,” says Ayaz.